The Boyfriend made this mini-cake the other night and I posted the pic on Facebook. Many of you wanted the recipe, so he agreed to do a guest post! This is a recipe that his family makes for his birthday (which, incidentally, is tomorrow!.. Happy Birthday Sweetie, you rock my socks!)
Guest Post Below:
My mom makes this cake for me for my birthday, and I love it! Light and fluffy, not too sweet, with a nice mix of flavors. The cake is flavored with pineapple juice and almond extract, and the frosting with maraschino cherries and almond extract (which, if you didn't know, are the same flavors!). Stabilized whipped cream goes so well with fruit flavors, too. In my mind, this is the perfect cake.
As Melody mentioned, it was originally a recipe from my paternal grandmother, but that doesn't necessarily make it a "family recipe"... I'm pretty sure that she cut it out of the newspaper!
The original recipe contains gelatin, which is pretty standard for stabilized whipped cream. I wanted to share this with Melody, so I made it with agar instead, which makes it vegetarian. This was a pretty easy substitution; even as an omnivore, gelatin kind of grosses me out. Basic stabilized whipped cream calls for 1/2 tsp gelatin per cup of cream, but since this is a cake frosting it needs to be a little firmer, I used 2 tsp of agar powder per Melody's recommendation. Just make sure to dissolve the agar in around 1/4 cup of boiling water and temper it with the cream before whipping which is a change in process from the original recipe using gelatin.
Stabilizing whipped cream isn't rocket science, but there are some tricks to it, so Google around first if you've never done it before. Here is a good link to start with: http://www.joepastry.com/2011/
I'm sure that you could make this vegan by substituting for the egg whites and heavy cream, but vegan baking is WAY outside of my current skill set.
The recipe says to only put frosting between layers and on top, but I always end up spreading the remaining frosting on the sides. I made a half a batch to make the 4" size; it baked up just fine, although the layers were much taller then usual.
Cherry Snow Cake
2 cups flour
1 1/4 cup sugar
3 1/2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
1/2 cup shortening
7/8 cup pineapple juice
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 1/2 tsp almond extract
3 egg whites (do not beat)
Mix flour, sugar, baking powder and salt.
Drop in shortening, add about 2/3 of the pineapple juice and beat (cut the fat into the flour).
Add egg whites, extracts, and the rest of juice and beat.
Pour into 2 greased and floured round cake pans.
Bake at 360 degrees for 25 - 30 minutes. Let cool.
1 Tbl gelatin OR 2 tsp agar powder
1/4 cup cold water
8-10 oz. maraschino cherries (with juice!)
1/2 cup sugar
1/8 tsp salt
2 cups heavy cream / whipping cream
1/4 tsp vanilla extract
1/4 tsp Almond extract
Soften gelatin in 1/4 cup cold water for 5 minutes.
Place over boiling water, stir until completely dissolved.
Add finely cut cherries w/juice, sugar and salt.
Stir until everything is dissolved.
Remove from heat and let cool.
Whip heavy cream.
Fold cherry mixture into whipped cream, adding vanilla and almond extracts. Mix gently but thoroughly
Slice cakes into halves to make 4 layers. Put frosting on top and between layers only.
I'm sure you could use other preserved fruit instead of the maraschino cherries... why not blueberry jam? Cranberries? Canned peaches? Note that highly acidic fruits may require more gelling agent, and certain fresh tropical fruits (pineapple, mango) won't gel at all!
If you come up with a new variation, please send Melody a picture.
It's Melody again... I wanted to show you another one of his amazing desserts... a Thai flavored version of "Baked Alaska" he called Baked Thailand! All homemade of course, coconut cake with a spicy peanut butter ice cream and kaffir lime meringue..
Now you see why I NEED to be doing Operation Booty Shrink!